Kathy: *awkwardly walks back into the Pokemon page of FanFiction* Hehehehehe...I'm back!


Kathy: I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry! It's just that life keeps getting in the way of my writing time! If I had all the time in the world, I would be finished with all of my unfinished stories by now!

Gary: *eyes her suspiciously* Sure...

Kathy: *glares at him* It's the TRUTH! Anyway, here's chapter 4 guys! Enjoy. (:

Disclaimer: I do not own Pokemon.

Chapter 4: I've Missed You

I woke up with the sharpest headache ever. I slowly opened my eyes and groaned. I got headaches whenever I slept for a long time and I hated it. The only solution to getting rid of it was to walk around town, which I found myself doing every time I got a headache in the morning. And that was often.

I found myself laying in my bed with the soft, cool bedsheets wrapped around my body. Bits of sunlight shined through the window beside my bed, indicating that it was morning.

The funny thing, though, was that I don't remember consciously going to bed last night.

I lay there in my bed, trying to recall the events from yesterday. How did I even get in bed the first place?

Then, I realized how I got in bed. Lucas was in my room and he watched over me while I vented and cried for a few hours. I blushed in embarrassment. I didn't like crying in front of people, even if they were close to me. I didn't want people to worry about me.

'You can't change the past. It already happened,' my mind told me. 'And, it's just Lucas.'

I subconsciously nodded in agreement. Yeah, it was just Lucas. He was used to the depressed me since he's been here for me since the start of this depression. I couldn't help but smile as I looked at the bedsheets on top of me. I probably fell asleep after crying and Lucas was probably the one who put me to bed.

It made me happy to know that he was here for me. He was just like the brother I've always dreamed of having.

After a minute of silence, I quickly sat up and the pain of the headache came back. A small groan escaped my mouth in reply. "These headaches, geez," I muttered to myself.

Trying to ignore the headache, I grabbed some clothes and started to make my way to the bathroom to take a shower so I could go on my walk around town to get rid of the headache.

But then, a new thought came into my mind, stopping me in my tracks.

'What if I run into Ash while I walk around town?'

A surge of anxiety rushed through my body. Ash Ash Ash Ash. I totally forgot. How could I forget that he was the reason that I had that crying session with Lucas last night?! Ash was here, staying in a rental house just a few blocks away from my house. There was no doubt I would run into him, especially since he said the reason he came back was to see me. Heat immediately rose on my cheeks when I remembered him saying he wanted to see me.

I nervously paced the floor, thinking of ways to hide from him. Should I hide in my room? Stay in the house all day? Call Gary and ask whenever Ash is in their rental house so I can go walk outside when he's in his house for sure?

I didn't think I was ready to see him yet. I was still an emotional wreck. I was far from being the confident co-ordinator, Dawn Berlitz. I might not meet his expectations. And I was very afraid of what he'd talk to me about.

But for some reason, I didn't want to hide anymore.

Finally, I decided to just walk around town and let Ash find me. I didn't want to stay locked up in my house for two weeks just to hide from a boy. That would be extremely boring. Plus, there was no escaping it. 'Ash is gonna come looking for me anyway,' I thought to myself. I was so sure because that was him. Ash was persistent. He never gave up on the people and things he cared for.

I let out a small, surprised laugh at how I still knew his character so well. Then, I headed to the bathroom to take a shower.

I was scared of what the future would entail, but I've waited to see Ash for two years.

I had to face him.

No matter where I was or how old I was, Twinleaf Town would always be my home.

Wearing a loose shirt and shorts, I walked around my hometown, breathing in the fragrance of crisp new leaves to rid myself of my nauseating headache. Twinleaf Town's aroma always had a soothing effect on those who breathed in its atmosphere.

It wasn't soothing enough to calm down my nerves though.

I was still anxious about running into Ash.

When I left my house, the clock read eight thirty in the morning. And if Ash had the same sleeping schedule as he did from the days when we traveled together, he'd be waking up at around nine o'clock. He liked to sleep in, but he always woke up just in time to eat breakfast. But sometimes he'd wake up earlier to train with his Pokemon.

In short, there was a fifty-fifty chance that I would run into him.

I secretly hoped he was still sleeping.

After thirty minutes of walking, waving to friendly faces, socializing with a few of my neighbors, and taking in the familiar scenery of my hometown, I decided to head back home. Walking so long had made me a bit exhausted and hungry. I hope mom made pancakes today.

Along the way when my house could be seen in the distance, there was a quaint, white one-story house just two houses away from where I was standing. The notable thing about the house was that it had a sleek, luxurious red convertible parked on its driveway. I stopped in my tracks, staring at the car and trying to figure out what made it so familiar.

"That's Gary's convertible," I realized a few seconds later.

I froze, realizing what that fact entailed. Since that car was Gary's car, there was no doubt that the house the red convertible was parked at was the rental house Ash and Gary were staying at!

My heart started pounding and racing in my chest again. My body became tense. Ash was in that house. And he could be coming out any time soon.

I tried to laugh it off. "There's no way," I muttered to myself, my voice in a faltering reassuring tone. "They're on vacation so he's probably sleeping or something." An anxious laugh escaped my mouth. "Yeah…that's probably it."

I attempted to start walking pass the house, but for some reason, my feet remained tense and frozen, and I couldn't move.

My feet must have been psychic or something because right at that moment, Ash walked out of the house.

That moment was probably the fastest I've ever felt my heart beat.

I never realized how much more mature Ash's looks have become. Probably because I spent most of my time hiding and running away from him yesterday.

He still had the same messy black hair and gleaming brown eyes that I remembered him having, but he went through some changes too.

The slightly chubby face he had when he was sixteen had thinned out a bit. His body was lean yet somewhat built at the same time, which was probably the result of being on nonstop journeys. And even though he was a couple feet away, I could tell that he got taller. I would guess that if he stood next to me, he'd probably be a head taller than me.

Overall, it looked like he got more masculinely handsome. And I found myself blushing at the sight of him.

Ash walked off the patio of the house and began to walk in the direction of my house. It looked like he was gonna try to visit me. Part of me wanted to yell at him that I was standing right behind him and another part of me wanted to sneak in through my house's backdoor and hide from him.

I decided to hide from him this time. I had two weeks to deal with him, so I had a lot of time to prepare to face him. I didn't have to deal with him today.

So as he walked towards my house, I quietly walked behind him, waiting to reach my house so I could run off to my backdoor.

But even though I silently followed him, the anxiety within me kept growing. Being behind him up close was more nerve-racking than seeing him walk out of his house. Why couldn't my house be closer?!

"Twinleaf Town's a lot like Pallet Town!" I heard him exclaim the same phrase he'd said two years ago the first time he came to Twinleaf Town with me. And I was thrown off once again; his voice got a bit deeper too.

Pikachu, who rested on his shoulder, chirped in reply. I subconsciously smiled at the sight. Those two were inseparable. 'Just like how Piplup and I were back in the old days…'

Soon enough, my thoughts became sad. Me and Piplup weren't inseparable anymore. I didn't even bother to ask him if he wanted to come walk with me this morning. Ash was still close with his Pokemon but I wasn't. I wasn't "inseparable" from my Pokemon anymore. And it's all my fault.

A sigh escaped my mouth. A choking and tense feeling came upon my throat.

"Pika pi!"

My head jolted up. In front of me on Ash's shoulder, Pikachu was staring straight at me.

My eyes widened and I quickly put my hand over my mouth once I realized what happened.

Pikachu heard me sigh.

"What is it, Pikachu?" Ash asked.

A smile came upon Pikachu's face as he pointed at me. "Pika pika!" he happily chirped, despite my attempt at shaking my head to not let Ash know I was behind him.

Ash followed Pikachu's gaze and soon landed his brown eyes on me. And once he saw me, a huge grin brighter than the sun formed at his mouth. "Dawn!"

I narrowed my eyes at Pikachu. "I'm gonna get you for this," I jokingly threatened him. Pikachu only giggled in reply.

"Dawn, I was just about to head over to your house," Ash happily told me.

I turned away from him, blushing and avoiding any eye contact with him. "Okay, that's great," I quickly said with a monotonous voice. "See you. Bye."

Then in a flustered manner, I tried to run away from him. But soon enough, I felt his hand wrap around my wrist. I should have learned from yesterday's incident that there was no running away from him.

"Why do you keep trying to run away from me?" he asked. I could hear a little hurt in his voice. That sort of pained me.

My attitude softened and I subconsciously turned to look at him. I was hurting him? "Ash, I…I…"

I blushed once I realized I was looking at him. I quickly turned away and rudely remarked, "Alright, you can go to my house and visit my mom. I bet she made a great breakfast and would be happy to train with you!"

But apparently, Ash found my rudeness amusing. He chuckled and replied, "That sounds great, but I actually wanted to spend the day with you."

I blushed fiercly at his words, but continued to look away from him. "You…you wouldn't want to spend time with me." I looked down at the ground. If we talked and he found out what I've been up to these past two years, he'd probably be disappointed with me. He probably wouldn't want to see me ever again.

Ash chuckled once again. What was so funny? "Why wouldn't I want to spend time with you?" he breathed out in a sweet tone. "You're my best friend and I've missed you."

I practically melted inside.

I could not describe how happy I was to hear those very words.

Tears formed in my eyes and I turned to look at him again. "Really?" I managed to choke out.

His eyes were full of sincerity and his mouth was shaped into a smile. He nodded in reply. "Yeah."

I couldn't take it anymore.

I threw my arms around Ash's torso and buried my head in his chest. I felt his body jerk a little in a surprised response to the sudden impact. Pikachu chirped in alarm at the sudden action as well, jumping off his trainer's shoulder and onto the ground probably to give Ash some space.

Ash remained in that shocked position for a moment. A few seconds later, the tension in his body disappeared and he gently embraced me as well.

"Dawn," I heard him breathe out.

I wanted to cry so badly. I could feel the tears in my eyes begging to flow down my face. I was so happy that I couldn't contain it.

Ash missed me. I'm still his best friend. And he told me himself. That was all it took to bring me to tears.

And soon enough, I found myself admitting to him,

"I've missed you too."

Kathy: And that's it for this chapter! This one's a little short too. I'll try to make the next one a little longer! (maybe lol) And please excuse all the minor spelling/grammar mistakes if you saw any. I hope this satisfied all you Pearlshippers! I'll try to update in 2-3 weeks, so be ready for it!

Gary: *rolls his eyes* I bet you're gonna procrastinate again and end up updating the story next year.

Kathy: *glares at him* Watch it, Gary. *turns back to the readers and smiles again* Anyway, thanks for reading! Review if you want! (: